Lesson 104 2021

Lesson 104

I seek but what belongs to me in truth.

1. Today’s idea continues with the thought that joy and peace are not but idle dreams. ²They are your right, because of what you are. ³They come to you from God, Who cannot fail to give you what He wills. ⁴Yet must there be a place made ready to receive His gifts. ⁵They are not welcomed gladly by a mind that has instead received the gifts it made where His belong, as substitutes for them.

What are the substitutes for God’s gifts? That would be anything we seek outside ourselves that we think we must have in order to be happy and at peace. If we think that we must live up to some ideal so that others will admire and respect us, we have chosen the gift we want. If we think that someone must behave in a certain way for us to be happy and at peace, we have chosen the gift we want instead of God’s gifts. If we think that wealth will make us happy, that is the gift we seek instead of the gift of joy and peace that God would give us. I used to think there was no way I could be happy and peaceful if my kids were not ok. It was a hopeless goal since I have no control over that and so happiness and peace did seem like an idle dream until I let that go and received God’s gifts instead. 

2. Today we would remove all meaningless and self-made gifts which we have placed upon the holy altar where God’s gifts belong. ²His are the gifts that are our own in truth. ³His are the gifts that we inherited before time was, and that will still be ours when time has passed into eternity. ⁴His are the gifts that are within us now, for they are timeless. ⁵And we need not wait to have them. ⁶They belong to us today. 

God’s gifts are ours for the asking as long as we do not choose other gifts in their place. It doesn’t mean that we cannot have anything else in the world, but rather that we not confuse them with true gifts. For instance, I can have money and I can have friends who love and appreciate me, but if I start to think these things are necessary to my happiness, I have chosen them instead of God’s gift of happiness. His gifts are real and enduring whereas the gifts of the world are unreliable and temporary. We do not have to wait for God’s gifts; they are ours right now if that is our choice. 

3. Therefore, we choose to have them now, and know, in choosing them in place of what we made, we but unite our will with what God wills, and recognize the same as being one. ²Our longer practice periods today, the hourly five minutes given truth for your salvation, should begin with this: 

³I seek but what belongs to me in truth, and joy and peace are my inheritance. 

⁴Then lay aside the conflicts of the world that offer other gifts and other goals made of illusions, witnessed to by them, and sought for only in a world of dreams. 

As we choose the peace of God, our cares and fears fall away and we are happy. Our happiness is the result of recognizing at long last that our will really is the Will of God. We want the same thing that God wants for us. How could we possibly fail to receive it?  

One of the conflicts I set aside today as I read this has to do with the post hurricane repairs. The work inside of my house is completed and so I am very comfortable there. The outside, however, was put off because of weather and now my contractor is committed to doing work elsewhere and has not gotten back to me.  

I was fine with that because I certainly would not have expected him to sit around not working until the weather improved, nor would I begrudge someone else getting their home in order. But suddenly, I decided that it was time for him to get over here and do my work, that maybe he has forgotten about me or he has more profitable work and won’t be coming back. I dread having to find another contractor because it is so hard to do so. 

As a result of these thoughts, I lost my peace of mind and I forgot what is important. I am reminded today that my peace and happiness are not dependent on who does the work or when or even if it ever gets done. And if I think it is, I lose sight of the truth, and I suffer. I remember that peace and happiness are mine as I release the belief that I make my own peace and happiness by hustling to find a way to get things done. I cannot be happy if I hold a grievance against my contractor. I can’t be happy if I fill my mind with nonsense instead of making room for God’s gifts. I release all this and wait for guidance on what to do if anything. 

4. All this we lay aside, and seek instead that which is truly ours, as we ask to recognize what God has given us. ²We clear a holy place within our minds before His altar, where His gifts of peace and joy are welcome, and to which we come to find what has been given us by Him. ³We come in confidence today, aware that what belongs to us in truth is what He gives. ⁴And we would wish for nothing else, for nothing else belongs to us in truth. 

I imagine this altar in my mind. It is very lovely and shines with a brilliant light. I stand before it with my gifts to God. If the gift is the desire to get my house finished in my own time and without regard to the good of others, and if I think that this will bring me peace and happiness it seems a shabby offering to place upon this sacred altar. 

On the other hand, if I stand before the altar with the gift of my trust and faith, with love, appreciation, and an open mind, I see that my gift is beautiful and worthy of the altar on which I lay it. I imagine my gift being received in love and love being given in return. I feel peaceful and joyful and all the previous distress melts away under the warmth of the Light and Love of God. 

5. So do we clear the way for Him today by simply recognizing that His Will is done already, and that joy and peace belong to us as His eternal gifts. ²We will not let ourselves lose sight of them between the times we come to seek for them where He has laid them. ³This reminder will we bring to mind as often as we can:

⁴I seek but what belongs to me in truth.
⁵God’s gifts of joy and peace are all I want.

(ACIM, W-104.1:1–5:5)

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